Thursday, April 05, 2012

A plea for affordable housing. Take a look.

And now, a message from my cousin, Drew Tucker, about the Metropolitan Housing Coalition. Please do what you can to help make affordable housing a priority in Louisville. -Brian

Hello friends!

Over the last three years I’ve been working with Metropolitan Housing Coalition of various projects around affordable housing in Louisville. Cathy, and Curtis are good friends of mine, and I find the work they do around advocacy, education, and research of affordable housing here in Louisville to be an invaluable resource for our city. Right now our city has around 7,000 vacant properties many located in the West and South end (where I grew up), a 25,000 person section 8 waiting list, and many homeless families, including 9,000 homeless children, in desperate need of affordable housing. MHC is working with the metro council, Mayor Fischer, and other non-profits to make sure that these properties don’t stay abandoned, and that they are repurposed so that they can provide new affordable housing options for residents of the Louisville metro area.

MHC has brought in Dan Kildee, a nationally renowned expert on foreclosed properties and tax liens from Detroit, to speak to the Mayor and others, about what Louisville can do on the city and state level to change the legal landscape such that these properties are available first to our land bank and not outside private investors who do not have much concern for the state of housing in Louisville.

MHC was also integral to mentoring me while I organized residents at Sheppard’s Square public housing complex as we prepared them for the changes they would experience after the demolition of their homes, and the subsequent scattering through the section 8 program. Without Cathy and Curtis’s help I would have been at a loss at how to create a direct link between the Housing Authority and the residents of Sheppard Square, who felt a significant amount of fear and anger due to the uncertainty of their impending move, and because of a breakdown in communication between the two parties in previous projects. With their help I was able to make sure residents received information directly, face to face, rather than through mailings, phone calls, etc. And although in the end they were still scattered throughout Louisville, they were directly involved in the decisions leading up to the move, and were able to speak directly to the Housing Authority when they so desired.

I cannot tell you how important membership is to Metropolitan Housing Coalition. Nowadays, grants only cover the cost of projects implemented by non-profits. Pay for the talented, and already vastly underpaid folks that make up these organizations is in short supply. And while I understand that we are in an economic downturn, it’s essential that we don’t let the groups that advocate, and educate us fall by the wayside.

Today, I am asking you to not only make a donation, but to show your ownership over the issues we face in Louisville around affordable housing. For $3 a month, $36 a year, you can support MHC in the second most vital way possible; the first is by giving your time to participate on one of their committee’s or volunteering your time. Three dollars a month may not seem like much, but imagine if 200 new members made this pledge? Sustainable giving, like this, is how we make sure organizations we value remain viable in times of economic crisis. Furthermore, it shows our commitment to the work they have done, and will do, into the future.

Please take a small amount of time today to visit the below website and let MHC know how much you value the work they do around creating education, advocacy, and research about affordable housing in Louisville.


Drew Tucker
Metropolitan Housing member, and sustainable giver

No comments:

Post a Comment